Skull Base Laboratory
The UTMB Neurosurgery Skull Base Laboratory is a state-of-the-art brand new facility which is tailored specifically for microneurosurgery skills development and research projects. The laboratory contains 6 stations with Mayfield head holders, portable microscopes, laptop and monitors for recording. Laboratory loupes 3.5x magnification and LED light sources is available for those who prefer to work without microscopic assistance. Suction/irrigation and surgical trays are available in each station.
Every resident obtains one cadaver cephalus with latex injection to perform curriculum based exercises. This curriculum is fully integrated in the yearly academic goals for each resident. Our neurosurgery interest group obtains also a cadaveric specimen for participation in exercises as well.
This laboratory is located on the 9th floor of John Sealy Annex and each resident has 24/7 access with key/log system. This is the same location where residents do rounds, films and clerical work (department area), in close proximity to the clinical ward.
Figure 1 (top left) Current laboratory overview. Dural repair simulator in left station and cadaveric specimen dissection projected to flat screens from right side station.
Figure 2 (top right) Example of an exercise performed in our microsurgical lab station by our residents and medical students. Right frontotemporal flap with interfascial dissection technique for facial nerve preservation as described by Yasargil and superficial temporal artery isolation for future bypass exercise (top left). Performing the frontotemporal craniotomy orbitozygomatic extension (bottom left). Identification of structures following apperture of the sylvian fissure both from medial to lateral and lateral to medial and anterior intradural clinoidectomy. OC: Optic chiasm; A1: Anterior cerebral artery, A1 segment - note the superior variation of the recurrent artery of Heubner (Heu) arising from A2; ICA: Internal carotid artery apex; CN III: Oculomotor nerve; SCA: Superior cerebellar artery; PCA: Posterior cerebral artery; BA: Basilar artery.
Figure 3 (bottom) Storage for surgical instrumentation and sawbones is in the same laboratory space for easy localization and use.
Jaime Gasco-Tamarit MD
Sponsors: Stryker, Integra, Biomet
Donations and Gifts: Paul Salinas, Jaime Gasco
Research Fellowship positions: A non-funded research position is available for internal candidates at UTMB. Contact email@example.com for further information.